Following a long recruitment process, Boxing Canada is proud to announce its new National Head Coach, João Carlos Soares Gomes de Barros. Recruited from Brazil, Boxing Canada is confident that Coach Barros is the right candidate to bring its High Performance Program to new heights and end the medal drought at major Games. The search initially started a year ago after recommendations brought forth by the Keegan report, an independent analysis of Boxing Canada’s High Performance program which stated it was necessary to bring in international expertise.
“Own the Podium (OTP) is delighted that Boxing Canada has hired a world-class National Coach with experience of producing Olympic Games medalists. João Carlos Barros will complement the leadership of High Performance Director, Daniel Trépanier.” says Mark Hahto, Own the Podium’s Director, Summer Sport. “The addition of Coach Barros will also allow for an expansion of Boxing Canada's National Training Center in Montreal at the INS Québec. OTP is confident that both Elite and Next Generation coaches will greatly benefit from the wide range of knowledge and experience that the new coach brings to Canada.”
Coach Barros brings tremendous experience to the Canadian High Performance Program along with remarkable results on the international scene. Indeed, Coach Barros possesses four World Championships medals along with four Olympic medals in as many participations, including a gold medal at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in the 60 Kg weight division. With 33 years of coaching experience, he first began his career in Cuba where he studied and worked for eight years in their provincial boxing development programs in Villara Clara before being recruited by Brazil to establish their centralized national program. Coach Barros holds an AIBA 3-star, APB and WSB coaching certification as well as being an international instructor for these AIBA courses. In addition to all his boxing credentials, João Carlos Barros also speaks French, English, Spanish and Portuguese, which will facilitate the transition and his integration.
“There is a tremendous amount of potential in Canada.” states João Carlos Barros. “I strongly believe that my experience and methodology will benefit the Canadian program in order to step onto the podium at major Games. I look forward to developing world-class boxers and coaches.”
After participating in a week-long training camp at the new National Training Centre in June, Coach Barros has now arrived permanently in Canada and he is ready to hit the ground running with his first competition at the end of the month of September at the Celtic Cup in Ireland. The boxers who will partake in the competition will be announced shortly. In the upcoming months, Daniel Trépanier will work closely with João Carlos Barros to ensure a smooth transition. Coaches from across the country will also be invited to partake in training camps, competitions and seminars in order to learn from the new Canadian Head Coach.
“Boxing Canada is excited and proud to welcome Coach Barros to our team as the new National Coach. He brings with him a successful track record of developing champions.” affirms Pat Fiacco, Boxing Canada’s President. “We would also like to thank Daniel Trépanier who has worked both as National Coach and High Performance Director for the past number of years. With Daniel Trépanier focusing on his High Performance duties and Coach Barros focusing on his National Coach duties, we are expecting great results in the ring for our men's and women's teams as we prepare for Tokyo 2020.”
Although the project isn’t new, Boxing Canada is finally moving forward with the centralization of its programs following many best-practice recommendations regarding its high performance structure. The decision to move forward was officialized this past weekend during Boxing Canada’s semi-annual meeting along with a number of important decision for the organization’s plan toward Tokyo 2020. It is not by coincidence that an in-depth analysis of the 2016 Olympic Games’ results has shown that 15 of the 18 countries who won medals have been operating under centralized programs for years. This trend is also observable among other successful sports in Canada. After exploring the project from all angles, Boxing Canada determined that centralization was necessary in order to offer competitive programs and world-calibre training and support services to its high performance athletes.
With this new direction, Boxing Canada has decided to establish its new National Training Centre at the Institut National du Sport du Québec in Montreal. Though financial and legal formalities are ongoing, the partnership is proceeding well. After moving its head office to Montreal in 2015, the Olympic stadium was the logical choice to centralize and establish its National Centre. The proximity of the High Performance director, access to bilingual services and education as well as space available within INS Quebec are all factors that contributed to the decision to centralize at this location. The Olympic park is the perfect setting to take root and grow the sport of boxing while having year-round access to cutting-edge facility and equipment.
There are many advantages to centralization and the benefits will have a concrete impact on the quality of programs and services rendered to our athletes. Also, an amalgam of medical, scientific and sport-related services will be available on-site, such as strength and conditioning, nutrition, sport psychology, performance analysis, massage therapy, physiotherapy, physician and much more! Since all these services will be combined under the same roof, it will enable an optimal developmental structure and ongoing monitoring of our boxers on a daily basis. Moreover, a support team dedicated to boxing will supervise athletes on all levels which will enable an individualized approach that caters to their respective needs. The accessibility and proximity of the services will increase the efficiency of the program. Boxing Canada is also looking into recruiting International expertise to work with the National team in preparation for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Within INS Quebec, a designated space for boxing-specific activities will be built according to our requirements and will provide conditions on par with best practices in the world. On a long-term basis, the centralized program aims to identify up-and-coming hopefuls and supervise them from a young age in a high performance environment focused on development.
The centralization process will begin in April 2017 where all services will be provided within the INS Quebec facilities. However, due to construction work underway at the Olympic stadium, boxing-specific training and activities will be temporarily located in a local boxing gym until the completion of the renovation project. The final stage of centralization within its new National Training Centre at INS Quebec is expected by early 2018 or sooner should the renovations be completed in advance.
Boxing Canada is confident that its centralization will provide a highly professional international competitive program and will ultimately elevate Canadian boxing on the world stage.
Here are a few pictures of the services rendered within INS Quebec:
For more information, you can visit INS Quebec’s WEBSITE